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Survey seeks to better understand Equine Cushing's Disease
PPID is linked to weight loss, delayed coat shedding and a long curly coat.
Findings may provide insight into how owners make treatment decisions. 

Owners of older horses and ponies aged 15 years and over are being invited to share their views on pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID) in a new survey.

Also known as equine Cushing's disease, PPID is commonly found in older horses and ponies and is associated with laminitis, weight loss, delayed coat shedding and a long, curly coat.

The survey forms part of an international project to improve understanding of the causes of PPID and to improve early diagnosis, treatment, husbandry and nutritional management.

The findings will help researchers better understand how owners make treatment decisions and which decisions have the best outcomes. Scientists hope the findings may also provide an insight into how owners comply with administering medication and their capacity to feed PPID horses separately.

The survey is being conducted by the University of Melbourne - supported by the WALTHAM™ Equine Studies Group and SPILLERS - in collaboration with the Queensland University of Technology, The RVC, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica and The Liphook Equine Hospital.

SPILLERS research and development director Clare Barfoot said: “The survey will provide valuable information to help improve the healthcare and management of PPID horses. It will also give us a clearer insight into current levels of knowledge amongst horse owners and how best to provide practical, targeted information on PPID.”

To complete the survey, click here.

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Budding 'Dr Dolittles' sought for writing competition

News Story 1
 Vets are being invited to enter a writing competition run by the Page Turner Awards for a chance to get their story published or even made into a film.

Dubbed the 'Rolls Royce' of writing awards, the Page Turner competition provides an opportunity for aspiring writers to submit unpublished fiction and non-fiction work to be read by a panel of influential players in the publishing industry.

A spokesperson said: 'Do you think of yourself as a magical healer, like Dr Dolittle. Or maybe you have a story to share about the times when, sadly, animals can't be treated, and pet owners reflect on those moments they took for granted."

For more information, visit 

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News Shorts
Avian influenza confirmed in Lancashire

A case of highly pathogenic (HPAI H5N8) avian influenza has been confirmed in two captive peregrine falcons on a non-commercial, non-poultry premises near Skelmersdale, West Lancashire.

Following a risk assessment, APHA has declared that no disease control zones have been put in place surrounding this non-commercial, non-poultry premises.

Eighteen cases of HPAI H5N8 have now been identified in poultry and other captive birds in England. A housing order for poultry and captive birds introduced by Defra to control the spread of the disease expired on 31 March, although bird keepers in England are still required by law to comply with biosecurity measures.

For more information, please click here.